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Niemann gets 1,000th kill as volleyball defeats Seton Hall

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Niemann gets 1,000th kill as volleyball defeats Seton Hall

Photo by Austin Anderson

Photo by Austin Anderson

Photo by Austin Anderson

John Hand, Sports Reporter

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Marquette women’s volleyball needed four sets, but they were eventually able to defeat Seton Hall 3-1 (25-13, 25-19, 25-17, 25-22) on Saturday.

The victory was extra special because Saturday was Senior Day for the Golden Eagles.

“It’s big for (the seniors),” said head coach Ryan Theis. “All of them stepped in and did some nice things throughout the match, so it was great to see. Great to get a win on their last home weekend.”

Redshirt senior Meghan Niemann added another milestone to an already historical season by recording her 1,000th career kill.

Taylor Louis led the way for Marquette with 18 kills, while Jenna Rosenthal finished with 16 kills on an a .609 hitting percentage. Freshman Allie Barber also recorded eight kills.

“Our (six-foot-five) towers are nice to have out there,” Theis said. “I thought we didn’t do a good enough job of getting Allie the ball behind the setter early in the match, so we tried to make that switch late and I think that helped. And I think Jenna was going all night.”

Marquette dominated the first two sets by holding Seton Hall to a -.043 hitting percentage in the first set and a .138 hitting percentage in the second. In addition, Rosenthal finished the first set with five kills on five swings.

In the third set, Seton Hall jumped out to a 20-9 lead. The Golden Eagles were able to fight back to make the score 22-16, but ultimately it was too little too late, as Seton Hall took the set 25-17.

“I just thought it was almost compounding interest,” Theis said about the third set. “We talked about if we made a physical mistake we became tentative mentally. That was just leading to point after point. We had double hit and the next time somebody doesn’t step in and play a ball because they are afraid of the double hit. We had a net, so then the next time somebody doesn’t get close to the net. It was just a cumulative factor, everything going wrong at the same time.”

Seton Hall came out strong again in the fourth set, grabbing a quick 8-3 lead. With the score 14-9 still in favor of the Pirates, Marquette scored six unanswered points, including a Taylor Louis ace to take their first led since the second set. The two teams exchanged points, but with score tied at 21-21 Marquette used a 4-1 run to finish off the set.

“At the end I thought service pressure got to them and when they switched their lineup to the six-two I think it affects their ball handling a little bit and I think we were able to expose that late,” Theis said.

The Golden Eagles will welcome St. John’s on Sunday at 1:00 p.m. at the Al McGuire Center.

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